May 2015 Beach Grass Planting


This and next weekend you can help out.
From Town of Hempstead:

Hempstead Town Supervisor Kate Murray, Senior Councilman Anthony J. Santino, Councilwoman Erin King Sweeney and Councilman Bruce Blakeman announced that the town is seeking groups, clubs and organizations to volunteer planting beach grass at Point Lookout Town Park on May 9th and May 16th from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
The planting of beach grass preserves the important sand dunes that protect our shoreline communities and beaches. The dunes are the last line of defense between the surging waters of the Atlantic and area homes and businesses located on the barrier island.

“Preserving our dunes is paramount for the protection of the communities on our barrier island,” Murray said. “Since Superstorm Sandy, we’ve worked hard to rebuild our dunes and it’s crucial to plant beach grass to preserve and prepare them for future storms.”

Since Sandy hit our area, dedicated volunteers have planted American beach grass plants (also known as ammophila breviligulata) at the dunes throughout the barrier island communities including Point Lookout, Lido Beach and East Atlantic Beach.

“The dunes provide a protective barrier for our beautiful beachside communities, and we seek volunteers to help us preserve them for the future,” King Sweeney said. “Planting beach grass helps us in our efforts to safeguard our coastline,” Blakeman added.

“Thank you to all of the volunteers who have helped us plant beach grass in the past,” Santino said. “But our job is not done yet, we still need volunteers to protect our barrier island communities.”

Beyond combating erosion, the shoreline vegetation can actually help dunes grow in size by trapping sand in its elongated flowering spikes. As sand builds up around the new grass, stems grow higher, and newly sand-covered stems become part of the root structure.

Hempstead Town has built up dunes in Lido Beach, Point Lookout and East Atlantic Beach over several decades, and constant upkeep and repairs have been executed by the town’s Conservation and Waterways Department. Unfortunately, Sandy’s floodwaters severely damaged the dune network. At the same time, town dune structures spared local residents from even more severe devastation than would have occurred in the absence of the protective barriers.

“I want to thank volunteer groups who want to help with the important work of planting beach grass on the shoreline of America’s largest township,” Murray said. “With their help, our communities will be safer and better protected from storms that could impact us in the future.”

Participants are asked to bring gloves and a shovel. Groups wishing to volunteer should contact the town’s Department of Conservation and Waterways at (516) 431-9200.


Beach Grass Planting today, Saturday 12/13/14 9AM


after the beautiful sunrise this morning, now its time for you to rise and shine and help plant our share of 250,000 beach grass plants.  (Ok, so that photo isn’t this morning)


  • Hand shovel
  • Items to keep hands warm
  • Warm Clothes

Town of Hempstead says at TOH Town Beach East Bath House

PLCA say Second/ Middle Beach

close enough, see you there.

Dune Grass Planting 2014

The Turbek / Enfield Family were one of many who made the day a family outing!

The Turbek / Enfield Family were one of many who made the day a family outing!

The wet and cloudy weather didnt stop about 75 volunteers- more a gathering of friends and family of all ages, as they dug the sand and planted the new beach grass.

It started on the east side of the new “boardwalk” and dune overpass to the inlet.


when that was done, everyone went west from the “boardwalk”

In all, about 150,000 plants were placed, three times the amount we did last year! When they plants take full root, they fortify, almost solidify, the sand dune into a hardened barrier against storm waves, harder to wash away than just a pile of sand.


What a great day where neighbors literally planted the future protection of our town in the newly built up dunes. Thanks To All who helped! Thank you to Town of Hempstead and Town employees who have done a great job at our beach and made it all happen!

Not Cancelled – Today’s Event: Dune Grass Planting 4/26/14



Update:  this event is definitely still on with the light rain expected to end soon. see you there!


In fact it is perfect conditions for the plants!


Join your neighbors and fortify our dune system.

Saturday, April 26, 2014 9:00 am
at Civic Beach.

Don’t forget your trowel and gloves!

Jones Inlet Dredging to Begin

our current look, with as much top sand and forward sand catchment has been moved away from the shoreline to prevent washing away

our current look, with as much top sand and forward sand catchment has been moved away from the shoreline to prevent washing away

There’s been some discussions about the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) plan, the fortification along Jones Inlet being held up by NY Dept of Environmental Conservation, movements of sand and the like here in town at the NY Rising and other local meetings.

So I decided to find out what the story is. I sat down with town of Hempstead Department of Conservation and Waterways Commissioner Ron Masters who gave me many, many details.

Due to Sandy and other factors Jones Inlet has become dangerous for maritime navigation and is being dredged starting this month by the Army Corps of Engineers.

This is completely separate and in addition to the upcoming USACE project that will fortify our shores from Atlantic Beach to Jones Inlet, due to begin in 2014.

The bad news is: this plan does not address revetment of the north side of the inlet in Point Lookout: that is still not permitted from NY State Dept of Environmental Conservation.

Now the good news: In this original inlet dredging plan, USACE was to take all of the dredged sand and dump it out to sea. Luckily our town officials, including Commissioner Masters and his staff were able to insert their requests into the process that will actually both save the Army Corps effort and give us that sand that will be dredged, we so desperately need.

Our beach replenishment several years ago was approximately 500,000 cubic yards of sand. The expected dredging in Jones Inlet this time around is expected to be 600,000 cubic yards. 300,000 of that is from the extended Jones Beach side jetty which was damaged badly in Sandy, spilling all that sand over and into the inlet. If you think it looks like there’s a beach along the Jones Beach side of the inlet it is because… there is.

The "beach" on the east side of Jones Inlet, seen from Point Lookout Civic Beach.

The “beach” on the east side of Jones Inlet, seen from Point Lookout Civic Beach.

Commissioner Masters explains, the sand is going “to all 3 Point Lookout beaches between groins 1, 2, and 3” and extra will be left “north of groin 1,” for future discretionary use.

“The Town made the case that the dunes be redone” with that sand he said.

Unfortunately the Army Corps of Engineers had initially said that we could not have it to make “dunes”.

To overcome those objections, Town officials were able to get the sand on the basis that we will, instead, make “wind rows”. The town will make three big, long rows of sand parallel to the shorelines between groins 1-3, from the recovered sand. If they become dunes over time, all the better. The town is trying to place this sand as far back from the tideline as possible.

Mr Masters explains, “The three wind rows add mass to protect us against storms. The big buildup (20′ tall dune at the Point Lookout town beach which was half washed away during Sandy) kept Point Lookout from being flanked” by ocean flooding. Parkside Drive at the beach is in a perilous situation for very big storms and this will provide the best defense for now.

These wind rows will also give extra fortification and depth to our protection system when the big Army Corps plan comes in and expands the beach. That plan also builds new dunes and 3-4 groins (jetties) at the Point Lookout town beach to our west, and westward at Malibu etc.

That’s not all we may get.

Commissioner Masters tells me the town met with the Army Corps of Engineers last week about the USACE renovations of the stone for both the Jones Inlet and East Rockaway Inlet jetties.

Once again, thanks to their proactive measures, the town will get any unused boulders from that project. The USACE has agreed to make them available, and the Town of Hempstead gets invaluable materials for the price of picking them up.

The Inlet dredging project is expected to last about three months. I asked if there would be midwinter dune grass planting and although there are orders for grass in the works it’s unknown yet whether we can actually get the grass or plant it, at that time. I’ll keep you posted.

Coincidentally, while writing this post, I was contacted by Carol Eckert from Water Park Beach Association in Northport, NY.
They’re looking for replenishment beach grass and are having a tough time finding it. Can anyone help her? Post in comments below or email that info to me at and I will forward that info to her.

In related news: Newsday discussed Long Beach receiving $12 million for limited bay side sea walls to protect infrastructure.